My new novella is nearing release! Just as a teaser, I thought I would at least announce the title of the book and show the (hopefully final) cover art.
The book is called “The Map in the Fortune Cookie”. As I mentioned in a previous article, the story idea originated from a “story starter”, which is a brief sentence that gives a scenario on which to write that authors may not have thought about. They are a way of pulling a prospective author into a direction that may be quite different to what they would have considered otherwise, which can provide very interesting results and new skills as we learn our craft.
With my context set, I began the task of trying to write a story around the phrase I had selected. (In case you were wondering, the phrase was “What would you do if you found a map inside a fortune cookie?”) I had absolutely no idea what would happen in my story when I started to write. None of the characters were defined, nor did I know how I would build a world around a single phrase. But I started to write, and piece by piece it started to fall into place.
So now it’s within a couple of weeks of being finished. The story is written, the characters are becoming real to me, and I’m in the third or fourth draft stage. I’m still finding things, details that are missing, elements that don’t quite make sense.
Once I’ve finished this draft, I will pass it over to my editor (my partner, Benedict) to look over it and scare me with how much I have to rewrite. Regardless of how many times we review and revise something ourselves, we have huge blind spots and there are things we could read a thousand times and miss completely. I cannot overstate the importance of having someone you trust to help find these.
I’m very aware that this is my first attempt at really writing a story, and I know it’s not going to be great. I’ll settle for just plain “bad”. But it has been great trying to do something new, something I’ve wanted to do for as long as I can remember.
And I hope when it’s done, that readers will enjoy it as much as I enjoyed writing it. Almost, anyway.